Clegg has done over two of his most ardent supporters in as many weeks. Jeremy Browne was a staunch Clegg ally before his leader humiliatingly kicked him out of government. “Our door is still open, we are a broad church” a senior Tory involved in their plans to get Browne to come over, tells Guido. It’s said Browne is particularly sore about the £30,000 pay cut that came with his sacking, especially given he and his partner have just had a baby. “I doubt we’ve heard the end of this” says the Tory source.
Then there is David Laws, who has been another of Clegg’s best friends in government. So Clegg’s coming out against unqualified teachers in free schools in the same week Laws praised the “superb job” they do doesn’t exactly show much gratitude. Given that the LibDem left were on the receiving end of a resounding thumping at their conference, Clegg knifing the right of his party and cosying up to teaching unions is odd to say the least. Does he have a death wish?